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All blog pieces written by Ellen Leith unless otherwise stated

Embracing uncertainty and planning for the future

The past few years have been characterised by upheaval, change and uncertainty. Looking forward, it’s obvious that we’re not going back to the old world. The pace of change is accelerating and those not frozen in the headlights are busy rethinking the structure of their organisations to allow them to continue adapting to change.

Macroeconomic headwinds, market disruptions, competitive pressures, and rapid technology innovations are shifting markets faster than ever. Businesses have had to make repeated, sometimes profound alterations in revenue, demand, expense, and staffing forecasts. In a world shaken by the fallout from lockdowns and layoffs, many businesses are facing falling demand for their products and services.

Top 10 Trends across Procure to Pay

career imagejpgAs we head into the second month of the year, we wanted to share some of the emerging trends that we expect to impact our lives across Purchase to Pay this year.

Agility and Control
In an environment where much of what underpins a successful economy is in a state of flux with high interest rates, stagnant growth, high inflation, companies need the agility to act quickly to changing circumstances. In a recession, managing cash becomes paramount. If an organisation’s processing is fragmented, if the supply chain is opaque and if KPIs are nothing but a list to be ticked, then that’s an organisation heading for trouble. In fact, it’s an organisation out of control. In order to inject the control you need into an organisation, it needs KPIs aligned to outcomes, deep visibility into suppliers, accountability and a reporting structure that makes sense. And these days that needs to be supported by automation, analytics and clean data. Strong analytics give companies the kind of visibility that makes it possible for them to pivot when necessary and be proactive in their response to crisis.

November’s a Great Time to ReThink

17th October 2022

Rethink. Thinking again. How many times over the last two or three years have we had course to do that? And if you’re an organisation determined to maintain business continuity and grow, that thinking has encompassed supply chain strategy, exposure to risk, the great resignation and how your company can react. But reaction is not enough. We need companies that are capable of being proactive. If the last few years have taught us anything, we know that we need to be ready to respond quickly to events that can blindside us. Of course, we can’t predict what the next crisis will be, but we can take a long hard look at the present and make sure it’s not setting us up to fail in the future.

Companies Thrive on Innovative Thinking

And that’s what Proactis ReThink is all about – giving insight into how companies can thrive on innovative thinking. The free to attend, two-day event on 8th-9th November is online again this year. Despite the beauty of being able to meet again face-to-face, there’s still plenty to be said for remaining online – ease of, or rather, no travel and a wide net of procurement and finance professionals to tap into and connect with globally.

Winning Hearts and Minds on the Way to 2030
And the agenda is alight with some great speakers, some familiar with the Network, like Michael Ryan, founder of Finance Transformation UK, who on day two will touch on the importance of winning hearts and minds if you want your implementation to be a success, and well-known procurement leader, Dave Jones who’ll be looking at the future of procurement as we move closer to 2030. Goodness. 2030!

Alongside these sessions, we’d also recommend pulling up a chair and grabbing a ringside seat for Rob Topping’s presentation on the P2P benefits the Jockey Club’s shared services centre made from going digital. Everyone’s looking to make efficiency gains and stay compliant – and this tale takes you through the journey of a company that has.

Different Strokes for Different Folks!
But it doesn’t follow the same path for everyone. Despite the same drivers, each organisation’s approach and starting point will be unique. Take Magnox for example. The organisation which manages 12 nuclear sites across the UK was largely paper-based and knew they needed to change. Their session – From Manual to Fully Automated is a must watch. Ultimately, the conversation nods to the fact that no matter what your current processing looks like, it’s important to both do your homework upfront about your own processes and understand where you want to get to, and crucially, whether you company culture will fit in with your chosen solution provider. Essential in our view.

Does the Future Depend on Digital Investment?
So, does the future depend on digital investment? Well, we suggest coming along to join what’s likely to be a lively debate in the panel discussion on day two with our MD Ellen Leith, Peter Smith, former MD Spend Matters and business author, Peter Morley, Director Moore Insight and Proactis UK Commercial Solutions Director, Illija Ugrinic, and hear their take on the topic.

And if all that’s not enough to tempt you, the Proactis team have excelled themselves in getting both Baroness Karen Brady OBE to open the ReThink event and Sally Gunnell OBE to close the two days off with a bang!

Register Today and Network with Your Peers
So, the two days really does offer up some fantastic content for you to take part in. Of course, we’re all used to online events now, but make sure you bring your networking head with you and ask questions, network virtually with your peers and no doubt you’ll see some familiar names and faces. Chat to the event partners and Proactis team in the virtual exhibition hall and take your chance to speak to some of the leading players in the Finance and Procurement world.

See you there!

Leadership and Diversity of Talent

We've all worked with, for or alongside those people who've struggled to remember the names of fellow colleagues, can't remember who has children and only care about KPIs, and not who has delivered what to the team. But with the sudden disruption to teams and departments in the wake of the pandemic, knowing how people operate became just as important to business continuity as the systems they manage. Being a great leader means understanding more about the people within our organisations than ever before. For most people, home environments became work environments for the first time, so being sympathetic to differences became and in our hybrid world remains, imperative.

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Please fill in the form below to access our exclusive Focus Week videos